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tv   [untitled]    July 21, 2010 10:00am-10:31am PST

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this. we have regulations that are applicable where you need a one hour fire watch after the fire is completed, which is hard to enforce at the end of the day. one person is supposed to stayed behind to watch, but it is hard to enforce. you do not know if they had a permit or it was hard to get a permit. the letter that you have from the associated contractor, looking for clarification about the definition of noncombustible roofs to specify the details,
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putting a non proprietary customizable coating, drafting legislation to amend it and address. >> questions, commissioner? >> can you explain to the public a little bit the difference between a compulsion roof and a non compulsion roof. what is the difference? how would you describe -- describe that? >> a combustible roof is a wooden roof, it can be caught on fire with a torch. noncombustible might be an asphalt roof or a plastic or ceramic coating. the association of roofing contractors, where a light board
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to be put on or a fiberglass board, put on to insulate the wooden roof from the woofing. -- roofing. making sure that there is no chance that the roof could catch on fire. >> you are proposing to ban the torch completely from the job site? >> to ban the use of forges on wooden roofs. . -- torch's on wooden roofs. >> how many of these type are installed every year? >> i do not think we have the right numbers on that. i do not think the process takes down the tight. but it is something that we look
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into. >> how many fires are being caused by this? do we know? >> we have heard from the fire department about seven to 10 roofing fires happen every year. >> how many? >> 7 to 10. >> do you know of those were permitted or not committed? >> i do not have that break down. i think that there are cases of both. >> do you know how many fires are caused by propane barbeques on wooden decks? >> i do not. i know that there are many other causes of fires. i think that the reason we are exploring this one is because there are alternatives that can be used to prevent this.
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even use a hot glue approach or a hot lot. people but the code revisory committee brought the case of plumber's using propane torch is and they cause all ties of fires. basically because there is not a viable alternative. this is something where if you look at reputable movers they do not do this practice because it is on save and we think that we should reward the reputable movers by taking away this cheaper, and save option from less reputable competitors. >> it sounds to me like a witch hunt on small roofing contractors. bigger companies recommended putting different services on the roof before they put the roof line. >> if you want to use it. >> in my opinion that would cost an additional $8 to $10 per
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square foot. small homeowners are the ones who are going to pay for this. we have been doing it this traditional way in san francisco for how many years? how many fires as a cause in 100 years? in the san jose or a word, where you have these newer buildings, i could see where this could work, but in san francisco we have all of these old victorian buildings with carpets and all kinds of cornices that have to be roughed up there and it is hard to get up there and do a roof the traditional way with a cattle and from endicott. we say a lot of reputable movers, union roofers, still using a torch. this whole thing does not make sense to me, where we are going with this. that is just my opinion. commissioner? >> the other thing i would
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follow up on, how does this legislation affect existing groups that use this method? what happens is someone needs to repair it? could that be done? >> i believe that this would ban the use of torch's for repairing roofs. i would have to look into that. i believe that that would be banned as well. i believe that there is the alternative of using the glue approach to putting down new asphalt. >> so easy with the stroke of a pen to add costs on to the construction of it. people sometimes wait 30 years to be able to afford to put a new fund. adding all of this cost on their. >> do you know, this man on the use of torch's on the wood frame, the raw wood frame roof,
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you talked about the glue guns or the hot mopping. do you know how those costs compare? >> i believe that they are somewhat more expensive, but cheaper than the cost of putting down an entire new coating of non-combustible layers on top of the roof. >> seven to 10 fires each year? assuming * 100, giving a significant fires. i would dare say that most of these buildings are wood frame, next a wood frame. generally is not just the buildings that could damage, but the ones next to them. i understand the cost issue, but i also, especially in the light of the fact we are changing our name to the department of building safety, these are issues of great concern. when you have the opportunity to avoid setting fires and you have
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options within the realm of cost, it is good for us to consider. . >> is my belief that these kinds of roofs are more durable. has anyone looked to compared to see how they work compared to other options? tar and gravel roofs, they do not last as long because the sun cracks the roof surface. >> it was my understanding that the hot modified approach of roofing is similarly durable to the force applied, basically the same materials being used. i believe that with a hot glue method, it is the same method, just instead of a torch you are using the hot glue approach. i imagine that the durability
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would be the same as it is the same fundamental roofing material being used. >> i have one question. on the glue to be used, are there environmental issues associated with the type of glue be used? >> not that we have heard of or as far as we know. there is approved glue. >> is a water based? >> it has not raised any environmental or safety issues. >> any other public comments, commissioner? >> good morning, commissioners. i am a resident of 1161 hayes. in the constituent that brought this issue to the supervisor in the march of 2007.
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there roofers in the building next two hours on the square and the result of their using fortified roofing, the fire went into our suburb of, a predominately in my apartment, essentially destroying my apartment and the apartment next to it. since that time, this legislation was introduced. two years ago the apartment fire in my place was three years ago. i understand some of the concerns around cost, but i will present to you and other options as far as cost, the cost to me as far as a constituent and my neighbors who had to leave their apartments for eight months, the $500,000 in damage to my building owner's apartment building to get handled, and in addition the fact that there are seven out of 10 fires each year happening in san francisco. the question before the apartment of building inspection is whether or not this practice is a practice that san francisco
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wants to allow or not allow regardless of cost. as was mentioned, new york city in 1999 and torture by moving completely. i spoke with a fire inspector last week in new york city and he asked them about that ordinance and he remembered the fire, brought back to the city council on behalf of the fire marshal, who said that this would be a good idea for york city with his preponderant of wood frame buildings. the concerns of increased costs in addition to the effect on small roofers, they will adjust in 11 years. new york city has infinitely more construction than seven sisters and a density that is on par. as a constituent here, seeing the apart -- department's response and the fire department's lack of response,
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we went for this legislation two years ago. they know it is a consistent issue. to date if you have concerns regarding the band, personally i have yet to see anyone with a vested interest in terms of a written policy or any part of the fire department to proactively address this issue. and it is an issue. seven to 10 fires each year but there is no change in the permitting process, enforcement admits that they do not really enforcing. two weeks after my fire, picking up the remains of my belongings, the roofers came back to finish the job with the same court to apply roofing. only upon by yelling at them and eventually having to call the police department, because no one answered of the fire department, did anyone come up to say and ask them to stop what they're doing, even though the police apartment admitted they had no control over permits. i ask for your support in
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supporting the man. >> thank you. >> commissioner? >> i would like to make a motion to support the ban on fortified roofing. -- torch applied roofing. >> what is before us today is prohibition. banning the practice this material is wonderful for rooftop backs. they are all over the city and it is a wonderful material that is lightweight, expanding and contracting with the material. i have no problem with paying more money to have a system put in if it is safe for the neighbors and the building occupants.
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of course, this has come up a number of times where there have been fires due to this. this certainly should be watched and carefully monitored, but to take a product that is an excellent product and prohibit it from use, it really works well in san francisco. particularly on these rooftop decks. their light weight compared to the old fashion systems with many layers that are heavier on the buildings and light weight in an earth rate -- earthquake prone area, which i think we should certainly regulate. no doubt about that. thank you very much. >> thank you. the next speaker? >> good morning, commissioners. luca brian. we wanted to weigh in on this.
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i think it is a bit of a monument to the reaction of the action that occurred. i detected from the speaker whose fire was affected some emotional backlash from what happened to him, which is very understandable, but we would caution ourselves not to let emotions said in and dictate decisions that we make. i would like to investigate this a little bit more. i have been around job sites for many years, putting on routes myself. -- roofs myself. fortunately i have not had an incident like this. be reminded, commissioners, that it is not the torch that was responsible for the fire. it is the use are flying the torch and using the device, as
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well as the manager involved. not the process. that would be a much more appropriate decision to take, to say we just manage it. -- ban it. cars blame people every year -- cars kill people every year, but we blame the people, not the cars. this is not an epidemic that we are dealing with, it is being overblown. a slight reaction to a situation looking for a problem. at best i would recommend a recommendation to look at enforcement safety on the job site.
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i am a little bit worried, but the other motivation, i am worried about how much that plays into this as opposed to the safety issue. that is a concern i have. thank you. >> i have a question. as the previous speaker said, basically is the people that use the equipment knowing how to use it. it is a matter having a fire watch, someone out there
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watching this, you would not have it happening. the torch is an excellent product, as we know in the industry. this is not an appropriate way to go through with this. i would urge you not to vote for it. thank you. >> thank you. commissioner? >> i have a question. >> sorry, one more. >> i wanted to clarify something about the code to advisory committee. at first we did not support the proposal as it is, but we did suggest that alternatives be looked at, as there is clearly a problem here if there are that many fires attributed to it as well as loss of property and possible loss of life. we also suggested that there perhaps be criminal penalties looked into. if someone is just going to be fined a few hundred dollars for
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doing this and the king caused so much damage, there should be more serious action and consequence. we just wanted people to take a broader look at it. we were also concerned that there was not input from the moving industry at the meeting. i notice that the supervisor did have some information from them. had that been presented to us, it might have changed things. >> thank you. i see no more speakers. public comment is closed. commissioner? >> one of my questions is for clarification and i wish there was someone from the industry here, we are talking about banning a process, not a
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product. there are a lot of ways to the same product on the roof and what we are saying, i think, is banning the use of open porches as a method of using the asphalt shingles on the rue. and there are other ways of doing that. if someone could clarify that? there has been a lot of back- and-forth about a process and i think that that is a little bit of a difference. i just wanted to clarify. >> i can clarify with my understanding, the asphalt top of the roof is the same on each. there's one set of rules that would have it on the torch and another side that you would with
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a hot glue on. there are different types of the same product. yes, it is the type that uses a propane torch melting it onto the roof that would be affected by the band. jolie of lying to combustible roofs. -- only applying to them possible routes. -- only applying to combustible roofs. >> this torch applied moving band, i would like to go ahead with my -- torch applied roofing, i would like to go ahead with my amendment. >> seconded. >> i disagree. it is possible that we could have a roofing expert explain it u.s.. -- to us banning the practice
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seems extreme at this point. how many groups are we talking about annually? half of them are causing fires? i would like to know what the numbers are. can we do seven out of 10? what are the numbers? the problem is that roofers that are doing this incorrectly, is there some way to regulate this? should there be a permit process? helping to generate some statistics for us, maybe that should be the rap -- the last stop.
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people that come up to speak and say that their home was affected, accidents happen. i apologize for accidents. they are unfortunate but they are accidents. i would like to revisit this issue in perhaps six months or year. [no audio]
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>> an order has been recommended that uses all sorts of kinds of services -- services -- surfaces, but said nothing about keeping the flame from going through. i also sympathize with anyone who had a loss caused by fire. anyone can have a fire. i just do not think that banning it is practical. it is not a practical thing to do. and people are willing to do it anyways. a lot of contractors are going to do it. and they will do it under cover. put up parts and covers and the business will continue doing it. probably putting the property in more danger.
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you know? you know? i would like to refer this back to the department and have them come up with some ideas. some people in the department that know what they're talking about instead of having people that have probably never spent too much time on a roof coming in here and telling us what we should and should not do. >> we have a motion and we need to take a vote on the motion. >> i would like to make a couple of comments by a response. i appreciate the concern over the impact of the idea of using enforcement methods, but what we have seen in the years since the fire is the difficulty in enforcing this. no one is really out there looking to enforce this. basically the only way to get any substantial enforcement would be to hire more officers at a cost that would be conveyed to the permit holders.
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which would negate any sort of savings that you could have by being able to use this applied roofing. and i think the difficulty of knowing who is a permanent roofer and was not, the clarity that we see in this is if you have a torch on a wooden roof, that would be a violation of the law. that is the kind of clarity that we need to ensure the safety of wooden roofs. as far as more hard statistics on the fire, we would work with the fire department and bring it back to you for future consideration. what you have made a good point there regarding enforcing it. i think it could be made part of the inspection process. when a deck is ready to be roofed, it should be inspected first. one more inspection. the department would collect a
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fee for that. dad is the suggestion. there are ways around this if we come down and talk it out. we would love to work again. >> i appreciate that. we would be glad to look into it as well. >> perhaps we would find more information about what this gentleman was talking about. was the reverse certified? was he licensed? or did you roll off the street and go up there thinking he could do this job? >> we have a motion on the floor. my question, would you like us to continue this and resolve these issues and work with the department and code advisory committee and roofing industry? >> th